Camping holidays are a fantastic option for families with dogs. You don’t have to worry about leaving them in costly boarding kennels or finding a trusted pet sitter, simply bring them along and enjoy some quality time together exploring the great outdoors. Camping with your canine companion can sometimes be a bit of a challenge, especially if its your first time. So we've compiled a list of our top tips for camping with dogs on a Best of British holiday park.
1) Choose a pet friendly holiday park
It’s important to find a holiday park that welcomes your four-legged friend. The Best of British group has numerous dog friendly holiday parks offering varying levels of doggy facilities. With everything from dog showers to designated off lead walks, homebaked treats and exercise areas, you’re guaranteed to find something to meet your pet’s needs.
2) Familiarise yourself with the holiday park rules
When you check in to you chosen holiday park, be sure to familiarise yourself with the site’s rules and abide by them at all times during your stay. Only walk your dog within designated areas and pick up after your dog and dispose of any waste. Be courteous to other campsite users and try to keep noise levels to a minimum, especially in the morning and late at night. No one wants to be woken by the sounds of barking!
3) Have a practice run
If you’ve haven’t camped with your dog before, your first time can be a daunting experience! Preparation is key to ensuring your holiday runs without a hitch, so spend some time before your trip getting your dog used to everything. Pitch the tent in the garden and let your dog get used to unfamiliar noises and smells. It’s easier to identify any problems that you need to train against and overcome with the safety net of your home nearby, rather than during your holiday when your miles away from home.
4) Think about your sleeping situation
Sleeping can be one of the most difficult parts of camping with a dog, so it’s important to give it plenty of thought before your trip. If your dog is crate trained, it’s probably best to bring their crate with them so they can feel safe and secure. Tents with large porch areas are great for keeping you and your dog separate so they don’t disturb you during the night. Just like we have a roll matt or air bed for added warmth, it may be a good idea to raise your dog off the floor using a blanket or their bed from home.
5) Make sure your pets microchipped
When dogs get startled by unexpected noises they can sometimes run off, which may be disastrous in an unfamiliar environment. Before setting off for your camping adventure make sure your pets microchip details are up to date, so that you can be easily located in case of emergency. It’s also a good idea to make sure they are wearing a pet ID tag on their collar, with a phone number on that you can be reached on during your trip.
6) Carefully pick your pitch position
Tents can get extremely hot in the summer months which can be both uncomfortable and dangerous for your dog. Try and pick a pitch in shaded area to make sure they remain cool and comfortable at all times. Wind breaks are great for creating a secure space. If the pitches are allocated it might be worth discussing this with the campsite at the time of booking to see where they recommend.
7) Research dog friendly attractions
Most dog friendly holiday parks insist that dogs are not left unattended at any time, so it’s important to research dog friendly attractions closeby. The parks friendly reception team will undoubtedly be able to help recommend places of interest, but there are also some handy websites and apps that you can use.
8) Plan for emergencies
Sometimes unexpected accidents can happen and being away from home can exacerbate the situation. Before setting off on your camping trip it’s a good idea to save the contact details of the closest vet to your phone so they are easily accessible in case of emergencies.
9) Pack carefully
There’s nothing worse than arriving at your campsite only to find out you’ve left something behind. Think about what your dog uses at home and ensure you bring it with you on your trip. You may need to bring additional provisions to account for spending so much time outdoors. Below is a list of some of the items we would highly recommend bringing on a doggy camping trip
10) Research dog friendly accommodation options
If you want the experience of staying on a holiday park but don't think camping is for you, why not explore other accommodation options. Many of the Best of British parks in our group offer dog friendly glamping or caravan holiday homes, which may be more suitable. You could always bring your own tourer or motorhome!